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Health Insurance Providers Walk The Walk By Promoting Employee Wellness

posted by AHIP

on October 8, 2019

Everyone wants a healthier workplace: Employees want to know their employer cares about their wellness. Companies, meanwhile, have learned that giving workers the tools to improve their health pays off in terms of improved morale and reined in health care costs.

Health insurance providers know what works when designing employee wellness programs. Here’s a look at the efforts of three health insurance providers that help their employees achieve wellness goals.

Priority Health Expands from Wellness to Well-Being

With a focus on well-being, Priority Health is committed to making its employees happier at work and in life. It’s meeting the well-being needs of its 1,200-plus employees through a “Healthy Lifestyles” program that offers financial incentives and access to exercise, weight loss, smoking cessation, and stress relief programs.

At Priority Health, employees have the tools to exercise and eat healthy at work – thanks to upgraded onsite fitness equipment and yoga classes. They’re also encouraged to make their work space more comfortable with adjustable desk to maximize safety and productivity. Other elements of the “Healthy Lifestyles” program address mental, financial, and social health to help Priority Health employees be healthy, productive, and happy at work.

Its wellness efforts have improved employee satisfaction and engagement, with Priority Health ranking above industry benchmarks for employee satisfaction.

USAA: Take Care of Your Health

For 15 years, USAA has been known for its best-in-class employee wellness program, Take Care of Your Health. In a 2015 article, professors from the Institute for Health and Productivity Studies at Johns Hopkins University note that the program combines activities, environmental supports, and incentives. This enticing mix consistently draws a whopping 85% employee participation.

USAA offers onsite health clinics and a pharmacy at headquarters, not to mention a 24-hour onsite fitness center with subsidized rates that drop the more often the employee works out. The fitness center is well-equipped down to the workout wear that’s included.

Buildings include relaxation zones throughout, so fitness equipment, ping pong, pool, and foosball tables are never far from reach. The USAA main campus features outdoor areas for active recreation, too, including trails, tennis courts, basketball courts, and a soccer field.

The company launched a Healthy Points program in 2011 in which employees earn credits by participating in health promotion activities. They then redeem points for premium reductions in their medical coverage.

Highmark Health Gets Noticed

In 2016, Highmark Health was one of only two companies to receive first-time Best Employers for Healthy Lifestyles award recognition from the NBGH in the gold category. This award recognizes organizations with a “strong commitment to holistic well-being and related metrics.”

At Highmark, its program is loaded with environmental supports that emphasize health in a meaningful way. For example, it has an onsite employee health center that offers same-day sick appointments, physical therapy, and pharmacy services.

It also offers fitness center access for all employees at no charge. The secure bicycle parking and shower and locker facilities make it easy for employees to incorporate fitness into the workday. Similar to USAA, it also offers an incentive program that rewards participants with reduced health insurance premiums.

What all three health insurance providers have in common is that they designed programs that suit their corporate culture, consistently emphasize the importance of employee wellness, and have achieved measurable results.